A COCAINE addict was caught red-handed by police hawking in an area of Newport “known for drug dealing”.

Aaron Murphy was dealing in Kingston Road from his Citroen Picasso when he was arrested, the city’s crown court heard.

The 28-year-old had 15 bags of cocaine with a potential street value of £700 and a purity of 78-81 per cent.


Prosecutor Julia Cox told Judge Richard Williams how Murphy was spotted pushing drugs at 11.45pm on February 20 this year, in Kingston Road, an area “known by the police for drug dealing”.

She said: “The defendant was about to drive off when an officer ran towards the vehicle and told him to turn the engine off.

“Mr Murphy appeared to be shocked to the police.”

Miss Cox added that a search of the Newport home the defendant was living in at the time with his then girlfriend Holly Lawrence uncovered a drug dealer’s list of contacts, £520 cash and some cannabis.

Murphy, now of Heather Court, Ty Canol, Cwmbran, admitted possessing cocaine with intent to supply.

Lawrence, aged 27, of Clifton Place, Newport, pleaded guilty to permitting premises to be used for supplying a controlled drug of class A, possessing cocaine and possessing cannabis.

Miss Cox said Murphy had two previous convictions for drug driving.

Alex Greenwood, mitigating for the former Amazon worker, said: “The defendant has the extensive support of close family members and friends in court.

“He knows he has ruined his life by his conduct in February this year. He made the foolhardy error of supplying drugs to fund his own addiction.”

Mr Greenwood told the court his client was working with the Gwent Drug and Alcohol Service in order to “deal with his demons”.

His barrister added: “He had a serious addiction to class A drugs. He has done everything he can to rehabilitate himself.”

Mr Greenwood said Murphy had been hoping to study an Open University degree course in psychology.

Gareth Williams, representing Lawrence, said: “She has no previous convictions and has shown some remorse.”

Judge Williams told Murphy: “It was your choice to begin to use cocaine and as a result you became addicted.

“To service that addiction, you turned from user into supplier. This has had a catastrophic effect on you and your family.”

He jailed him for two years and five months and ordered him to pay a victim surcharge.

Lawrence was sentenced to a 12-month community order.

She must carry out 120 hours of unpaid work and complete a 10-day rehabilitation activity requirement.

Lawrence must also pay £340 prosecution costs and a victim surcharge.